This time of year summer and all of its bounty fade into days filled with towering clouds, endless twilight, and the soft patter of rain. I’ve started cooking stews and root vegetables, and I was heading down to Save On Meats for a nice comforting grilled cheese when I decided to check out the brand new storefront for Urban Cultivator, their “Living Produce Aisle” in the basement of 66 East Cordova. I love the Urban Cultivator, the fully contained appliance for growing fresh greens, and have been wanting to see these machines in action. The Living Produce Aisle delivered; the basement is ablaze with artificial sunshine and the smell of young herbs, good enough reason to stop in on a gloomy day. Buying greens here is likely to give a person’s mood a serious boost! I was amazed at how wonderful the greens looked, and couldn’t resist picking up some micro-basil. I whipped up a fresh pesto to go with a pan of roasted root vegetables and the basil was bursting with the flavour of spring.
I could go on about the benefits of local food and the health benefits of fresh greens, but what really struck me was how beautiful the urban cultivator is. They aren’t cheap; the small ones run around $2,000, but I can see a day where new lofts and condos come complete with a built in urban cultivator for the home gourmet. I will admit to being tempted; I would love to get up on a dark rainy day and enter a kitchen alive with the glow of artificial sunlight to make a smoothie filled with fresh wheatgrass.